By Julia Atherley
Durham University students will have lectures scheduled at 8am for the first time beginning Michaelmas term 2018.
Undergraduates in the Law and Business schools will have some lectures timetabled outside of normal teaching hours due to increased pressure on student resources.
In an email seen by Palatinate, the Director of Undergraduate Studies in the Law Department said: “There is nothing we as a department can do about this, it is beyond our control.”
He went on to explain that the changes were the result of “the increased number of students and the pressure this puts on timetabling and rooms”.
Law students continuing into their second year will have three 8ams in most weeks starting in October.
Celine Delal Kart, a first year Law student at St. Chad’s College told Palatinate: “It feels like this is a stab in the dark. I’d understand if it affected one or two of my modules, but it’s half of them.”
“The time we’re expected to dedicate to reading, internships, CV building, extra curricular and independent study will undoubtedly be further influenced by this, as it’s difficult to sustain an effective work mode when fatigued.”
Three departments, Law, Maths and the Business School, have over 300 students enrolled in modules next year.
Some first year Maths modules have responded by splitting teaching into two separate cohorts to account for the increase in student numbers.
A spokesperson for Durham University said: “We know 8am lectures or splitting up student groups are not ideal solutions – for either students or staff – but these arrangements are temporary.
“After 2018/19, the new teaching building – with its large lecture theatre – will ease the pressure on demand for our 300-seater teaching spaces.”
This announcement comes a year into the execution of Durham University’s controversial 2017-2027 strategy, involving the relocation of students from Queen’s Campus Stockton to Durham City. The University aims to increase the student population to 21,500 by 2027.
To alleviate pressures, the University has pledged to increase the number of study spaces available at the Bill Bryson library, establish new colleges and develop on the site of Sheraton Park.
The Estates Masterplan also includes the construction of a £41.9 million new science building.
Photograph: Maddie Flisher